Spain is ready to assist in making linkage with Azerbaijani port in Alat, Charge d’Affaires of the Embassy of the Kingdom of Spain in Azerbaijan Ignacio Sanchez Taboada told Trend.
“Azerbaijan is much interested in developing Alat Port as a piece a multimodal logistic infrastructure connecting East and West. Similar multimodal infrastructures are successfully operating in many ports of Spain, namely Algeciras or Valencia. If there is an interest from Azerbaijani authorities in coming to know those hubs in Spain, we will be much pleased to assist in making the linkage,” he said.
Taboada noted that our bilateral trade increased remarkably in 2019.
“The value of Spanish exports to Azerbaijan reached 69 million Euros. The value of Azerbaijani exports to Spain in 2019 was 650 million Euros. First figures for first trimester 2020 show a slight increase, despite the COVID19 pandemic,” he added.
Taboada pointed out that the rise in trade turnover is evident, but still the Azerbaijani market is not well known for Spanish companies and there is a huge gap between exports and imports in our bilateral trade.
“The direct investment is much more difficult to measure. Most of the investment made by Spanish companies in Azerbaijan is made through their subsidiaries in Turkey, and to a lesser degree in Russia, and hence is register as Turkish or Russian investment in Azerbaijan. Something similar happens with Azerbaijani investment in Spain, it is channeled through companies in Northern Europe, and register as investment from the Netherland’s, Belgium or the UK in Spain,” he said.
Taboada noted that it is probably too early to measure the impact of COVID-19 on bilateral economic relations.
“Trade figures for first trimester 2020 show a very slight increase in trade, but undoubtedly at the end of the year we may see some negative effects, for instance in tourism,” he said.